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Vancouver(ish) Tribe: Blooming Time - Page 7

post #121 of 768
Autumn mama, I think that it would be a child and parent one if you want to bring children. If it is during the week or on a Saturday, I will definitely have Lauren.
post #122 of 768

Drying Nettles

My friend says:
Quote:
Don't :-P
Eat them fresh, steamed.
2nd best is to freeze dry, powder and capsule them.

Beyond that, it doesn't take much to dry them. Either lay them on a cookie sheet and put somewhere up high for a couple of days, or loosely fill a brown paper shopping back and then hang the bag in a closet somewhere.
post #123 of 768
Thanks kdtmom2be. I'm drying the nettles to use in an infusion...I've been experimenting with about 1/2 C dried (purchased dried bulk herb) to a quart jar, topped with boiling water and then steeped overnight, strained in the am and drunk throughout the day. Capsules would take forever to fill, me thinks, and it's so easy to use nettles loose-leaf, as a mineral rich herbal vitamin. I don't know if capsules would offer very much nutritionally?

On the cookie sheet wasn't working; too much humidity around here right now?? They just shrivelled and turned wilty. Boy, this herbal wild crafting is finicky business!

I like the bag idea, will try that after it stops raining again.

Susun Weed steeps 1 C dried nettle to a quart jar, same routine as above. When I tried that infusion recipe, I had vertigo and got dizzy and felt dried out. Too powerful at that dose for a first timer, I think!! 1/2 C is working much better!
post #124 of 768
No problem. When she lived with me and we went nettle picking I remember her using the paper bag trick. We went to a park out in White Rock... I forget the name though, I could probably pick it out on a map though.
post #125 of 768
It's interesting, as I spend more time out and about, I am seeing nettle in many places, especially out our neck of the woods. And there are some great patches for picking for our family right on the farm, that should be providing plenty through the season. In the fall, I will try our friend's trick to encourage the patches to spread and bulk up, which is to disturb the roots at the edges of the patch with a shovel or spade!

We've been making an awesome potato florentine soup and we sub the spinach for about 8 C of nettle tops (they shrink alot, like spinach) We CANNOT keep this soup around longer than two days! It's the recipe from a Moosewood book...
post #126 of 768

Nettles...

Tricia - I'm still interested in the class, but would be nervous to bring BOTH kiddoes. With that in mind, a weekend day would work better for me.

If it's during the week, I could do it but would probably not be able to concentrate much on the class!
post #127 of 768
I'm just joining in on the whole Nettle conversation here... I think I missed a bit.

Would the "class" be on just nettles, or on foraging other edible things? I think Emma would like it but I'm not sure how Sarah would handle the class as she doesn't seem to want to walk very far anywhere lately. I'd have to carry her on my back. I can't even leave them behind with someone as its Dh's busy season right now so I have them 24/7 for the next month and a half.

Re: Drying nettles

Alton Brown (Good Eats) built an fresh herb dryer out of some furnace filters and a fan. If you're not so handy though, there are similar premade things available like this: http://www.walmart.com/ip/Hamilton-B...tation/5984252

Someone on my spinning list recommended that for drying locks of freshly washed wool. I don't see why it wouldn't work for other things..
post #128 of 768
Happy Spring

I can't believe my babe is almost 1
post #129 of 768
Me too Dawn! I can't believe that in a mere 6 weeks I'll have TWO Toddlers... or is it a toddler and a preschooler? It's bittersweet because while I LOVE watching them grow and learn new things, I will miss thier baby days and I know that DS is our last. I've been trying to make sure that I revel in all his newness the same as I did with DD. Today he learned to nod, he nods with his whole body though, it's so cute!
post #130 of 768
Nettles: was reading this with interest as I believe I have found a whole bunch growing on our property. I'm going to go back and confirm the identification but if so I'm very pleased to have a free source of excellent greens!

Question: do you have to pick them only when they are young (one site said < 6 inches tall) or can you just pluck the newest leaves from the top of the plant?

Also, will gardening gloves keep the sting away?
post #131 of 768
Went back outside after viewing some photos of nettles and yes, indeed, we have them. Lots of them! I'm going to have to show the children because as the weather gets warmer and shorts are worn they could be trouble. Meanwhile I'm going to go harvest some and cook them up to see how they taste. How exciting!!

Autumn Mama: what does the nettle tea taste like? is it yummy?
post #132 of 768
re: growing babies. DD2 now has six teeth, with another one trying to poke through. She's crawling everywhere. She's trying to walk. She's growing up soooo fast, and I'm so torn. On the one hand, it's such a delight to watch them learn and grow and try and just keep going. On the other hand...my baby is barely a baby - already!! She's 9 months tomorrow, and it's so hard to wrap my brain around the idea that this is my very last, after all this time...

DS1 turned 17 last Friday. Wow. He's not a child, anymore.
post #133 of 768
Just to let all of you know ... I haven't disappeared, and an invitation to a nettle learning party should be coming out on Monday. Just checking a location.
post #134 of 768
Well, if I can make it into town I just might attend the nettle party. I harvested some today and made Nettle Rice soup. It was yummy!!
post #135 of 768
hi Mariah!

It sounds like you've determined the part about wearing gloves because you've harvested some!

I wear gloves for handling, even after my fresh leaves have been in the fridge a few days.I have heard it recommended to even handle dried leaves this way! Around the farm they are so out of the way of day-to-day activity, that we never have bad experiences with them anymore. On your land, if they are invasive to the point that you don't want that many plants where you actively play, I would get dressed in long thick sleeves that don't hike up, long pants and gloves and dig it up by the pile, roots and all, and put it onto tarps to dry out, and then burn it.

If you don't dig out nettle roots and all(or any invasive you're trying to clear), it will grow right back, stronger! Cutting from the top will make your "weeds" stronger.

I have made a nettle infusion, by steeping 1/2 C dried nettle in a quart jar topped with boiling water overnight, covered on the counter, then straining, then refrigerating for the day. I drink it throughout the day. I started with 1 C of dried nettle to a quart jar, and it was too powerful for me, so I cut the dried amount in half. I infuse, because I want the calcium, the Vit K, A C, and the tonnes of minerals. When I take the cover off in the morning it is thick and very seaweed green. Gorgeous goodness!! The kids drink it, and we like it mixed with water, chilled or added to smoothies. I really notice the groundedness and even-keeledness all day long. It seems to be feeding my long-suffering adrenal glands, and leveling my blood sugar nicely.

So, so far, I'm using purchased dried nettle from the HFS, and then as I figure out how to successfully dry some, I will jar tonnes and keep it for Fall/Winter use. My first attempt at drying in a very cool oven, resulted in blackish dried nettle leaves that looked wrong, compared to the brilliant green of my purchased stuff. The plants I'm harvesting are now between 4'' to 8'' depending how much sun they're getting. I will harvest until flower set, which I think should be around late June here. I'll keep my eye on them. At that point they are not ideal to harvest, but you can then whack all of the plants down, and then enjoy a second flush of regrowth, just like perennial flowers in the garden. Put the cut plants in flower in your compost to accelerate it, so I hear. We will try this to test it out this year, as with the lovely chooks and their poop, I have nice compost going.

We make a potato florentine soup and sub in 5 C of fresh nettle for the spinach. The kids can't eat enough of this soup!!! It is from the Moosewood cookbook, called "Moosewood Restaurant New Classics". Matthew's learning consultant from SelfDesign is a nettle-head and he puts it into scrambled eggs, into lasagne, into any soup or stew he makes, and makes nettle-kopita from them.

Susun Weed had great things to say about nettle; I'm learning much from her site. And here's a fave blog and this woman is a herbal wise woman too, and has several posts on nettle...
post #136 of 768
mamas, you might be interested in helping with this? a friend of mine studying midwifery passed it along to me today.

Hi everyone,

As you know, I am working on a “quick and dirty” environmental scan for the BC branch of the Public Health Agency of Canada. While we have high breastfeeding initiation rates in BC, we want to improve on exclusivity and duration rates. The goal is to find out what is working for mothers, and where the gaps are. Hopefully we will do a phase 2 of the scan, with more in-depth focus groups with women.

Please consider completing the survey yourself, and please feel free to send it on to your friends and family in BC, and to post it on any appropriate groups you may belong to on line. It is very important to give mothers a voice and capture their input. The survey is totally anonymous, and thus confidentiality is guaranteed.

The link is http://surveymonkey.com/s/3VZYRTX
post #137 of 768
oh autumn, thanks for the reminder. i've been drinking a tea with nettle in, pathetically craving that dense black infusion i used to make! i will have a look online, you can buy anything online here! my children love it too, and we've been SO sick i'm back to all the cod liver oil and things we were neglecting. next up being organised for bone broths!!

*
post #138 of 768
Thanks for all the info, Autumn Mama. Right now they seem localized to one small section of woods on our property, far away from the house and "busy" outdoor areas. And yay for it being a compost booster, too!

I'll have to try that infusion. I'm SO jealous that your kids would try something like that. My veggie-phobic kids won't touch the stuff. They did think it was pretty cool that I was going to eat something prickly and stingy, but they want no part of it. Sigh! I'll just have to sneak the dried stuff into their food as I do with my veggie purees.
post #139 of 768
Quote:
Originally Posted by Piglet68 View Post
Thanks for all the info, Autumn Mama. Right now they seem localized to one small section of woods on our property, far away from the house and "busy" outdoor areas. And yay for it being a compost booster, too!

I'll have to try that infusion. I'm SO jealous that your kids would try something like that. My veggie-phobic kids won't touch the stuff. They did think it was pretty cool that I was going to eat something prickly and stingy, but they want no part of it. Sigh! I'll just have to sneak the dried stuff into their food as I do with my veggie purees.
Your welcome. I like the spirit of contributing what I can to friendship! It's great you're not overwhelmed with them everywhere. When dried I've read that they make an awesome green nutritional boost to livestock feeds. A mama on SD uses it for her chickens during winter.

My boys are experimental with food, always have been. Just lucky in that department I think, not the norm!! It is definitely a plus having a few male mentors around the area, who are pretty forage-savvy and open-minded about wild crafting and edibles. And his LC is a big help there, too.
post #140 of 768
Quote:
Originally Posted by artparent View Post
oh autumn, thanks for the reminder. i've been drinking a tea with nettle in, pathetically craving that dense black infusion i used to make! i will have a look online, you can buy anything online here! my children love it too, and we've been SO sick i'm back to all the cod liver oil and things we were neglecting. next up being organised for bone broths!!

*
Yeah, I'm still tweaking with amounts I make and drink. It seems pretty potent for me; just a different constitution, perhaps? I can get a bit dry and drained after a day of sipping 8-12 oz. I feel energetic, too some days, it just isn't consistently "building" me up, and I wonder why?? Thoughts?

I'm toying with seeing a herbalist who is versed in using nettle....but it's the $$, and what-not. And time to get to one, I can't find one out our way yet. I'm learning that acidosis affects our mineral uptake, so maybe my PH is off?? Too much coffee, cheese and dairy, likely.

But what else is there to eat? Winter sees me heavily into these foods + extra coffee. I do drink it 1/2 decaf every day though, and now I want to get to 1 C 1/2 decaf a day, and THAT's IT!!! But the 4:00 slump hits and I make more...
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